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Gabatron Morning Briefing – 6-22-16: Men In Black Invade Iowa

People in one Iowa town keep reporting sightings of men in black walking beside the road. They haven’t done anything illegal at this point, but they are really freaking people out. They seem to show up only at night, and they aren’t exactly dressed like Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones. They are wearing black trench coats and capes. More or less creepy than the clowns that will occasionally show up in a neighborhood?

Based on the success of the Saved By The Bell restaurant here in Chicago, you had to know more would be coming. A Golden Girls pop-up restaurant will be opening in New York. I anxiously await the opening of the Knight Rider-themed drive in. Here’s my problem with this: Saved By The Bell took place in California (Aside from the first season in Indiana, after which all of the main characters decided to move to California together… really) why is the restaurant in Chicago? Golden Girls is even worse, since they were in Miami. Shouldn’t the pop-up be in a location that is remotely tied to what happened in the show?

The whole religion thing worked out so great for Donald Trump in the primaries that he’s going to that well again. Now he’s questioning whether or not Hillary Clinton is actually religious. Because Donald Trump is the picture of religious piety.

Rory McIlroy has decided not to compete at this summer’s Olympics in Rio due to fears over the Zika virus. It’s the latest problem for the Rio Olympics. Do you think the IOC is regretting picking them? Tokyo and Chicago are probably looking pretty good now.

A 15 year old girl in Alabama decided it was a good idea to put on a Barney the Dinosaur head to prank her friends. The costume got stuck on her head and she had to call the police to get it taken off.

Gabatron Morning Briefing – 3-1-16: Assault With A Deadly Emoji

Welcome to the Internet age: A 12-year-old girl is facing criminal charges for making a death threat… with emoji. And she’s one of several defendants across the country in cases where emoji are being interpreted as threats, including one in which a cop emoji was followed by a gun emoji. How seriously should the courts take emoji threats? Because some people see emoji as cartoonish and non-threatening in general, and others see them as the new (really stupid) universal language.

Everybody panic: The first Chicago case of the Zika virus has popped up at a hospital on the north side. She’s not pregnant and had recently traveled to Colombia. Officials are expecting the number of cases to rise over the next month or so, as people head off the warm weather destinations for spring break.

Donald Trump has hit 49% among Republicans nationally according to a new CNN poll. That would seem to be somewhat problematic for the “well if only Cruz/Rubio dropped out and it was a one-on-one race” crowd.

Trump was interrupted by a protester at rally on Monday. He asked her if she was from Mexico and scolded her for interrupting his punchline.

CBS head honcho Les Moonves has found the silver lining in the rise of Donald Trump. “It may not be good for America, but it’s damn good for CBS,” and called Donald Trump‘s presence in the race a “good thing.” He’s not wrong.

El Chapo says he’ll plead guilty in the US under one condition, he wants to go to a medium security prison. Gee, I wonder why. He’s currently being held in the same prison he escaped from, and apparently he’s not happy with the way he’s being treated.

House of Squalor: A woman in Kansas City was living with 26 cats in her house. People thought the house was abandoned. Basically, they were squatting in the house with 26 cats. The city only allows people to have up to four animals, so even if they were living in it legally 26 would be a problem. She said she wants people to know she is not a crazy cat lady. Which is exactly what a crazy cat lady would say.

Pour some out for Joe Patroni. Actor George Kennedy has died at the age of 91. He was Dragline in Cool Hand Luke, Joe Patroni in the Airport movies and of course Ed in the Naked Gun movies.

Gabatron Morning Briefing – 2-15-16: Republican Presidential Race Goes Thermonuclear

Donald Trump decided to extend his war on the Bush family to George W. Bush during Satuday night’s debate. He went full Iraq War Truther, saying that Bush liked about WMD in Iraq, and proclaimed that he knew all along that they weren’t there. Dubya has about an 80% approval rating in South Carolina, so it will be interesting to see how people react to that.

Saturday’s Republican debate was a real humdinger. The biggest fireworks were between Donald Trump & Jeb Bush, Donald Trump & Ted Cruz and Ted Cruz & Marco Rubio. Charles Krauthammer said it was “thermonuclear” and the GOPers went from WWE to UFC.

Ben Carson decided it was a good idea to quote Joseph Stalin in his closing statement during Saturday’s debate. He was basically saying that society is collapsing, and this election is about turning things around. The problem is Stalin never actually said that, it’s just a meme that’s been floating around Facebook for a while.

America is finally hearing from Amy Lindsey, the adult film actress who ended up in a Ted Cruz ad. She said that people called her to say the ad was being pulled before she even know it had been released. She says that she identifies as a conservative Republican, and she would still consider supporting Ted Cruz in the Presidential election.

Rahm Emanuel is bringing back the idea of an express train between downtown and O’Hare. It would cost some public money, but they are actually looking for a private company to build and operate it. Fares would range from $25 to $35 for the roughly 20-minute journey, which is half the time it takes for the Blue Line. We’d be better off researching teleportation.

A flugelhorn player was the victim of a smash and grab in Chicago. He was at a yoga class at the time (There’s the problem). The guys horns and the case they were in are worth about $8,000.

The health ministry in Jamaica wants to raise awareness of the Zika Virus, so they’ve released a new PSA. It features a reggae song about the virus, and it’s every bit as awesome as you think.

Good news: Cuba has returned our lost dummy Hellfire missile. It was somehow accidentally shipped to Cuba in 2014, and we had been working to get it back every since.

Watch porn to save the whales! To celebrate World Whale Day on February 13, PornHub has pledged to donate 1 cent for every 2,000 videos viewed on their site between February 8 to 29. All the proceeds will go towards the non-profit cetacean conservation group The Moclips Cetological Society.

Bill Murray got mad when some people at a party in California were taking his picture and threw their phones off of the roof. He was apparently annoyed at the constant flashes from the camera phones. Murray has offered to pay to replace all of the phones, so there wasn’t be any charges filed.

UPDATE: Remember the guy who was arrested for having sex with a woman on the ferris wheel in Las Vegas? He was actually supposed to marry another woman that week. His fiance told him that she was pregnant with another man’s baby, and he went on a drunken romp throughout the city that ended up including picking up a 21 year old stranger and going on a ferris wheel ride. The fiance ended up bailing him out of jail and doesn’t seem as furious about the whole thing as one would assume.

Gabatron Morning Briefing – 2-10-16: America’s Newest Hero Wants A McRib

Meet Carla, America’s newest hero: She posted a video on Facebook claiming she just throat punched a McDonald’s employee. She asked said employee for their offer of an extra McRib for a dollar with the purchase of a regular-priced McRib. The employees replay, prompting the throat punch? “Well it don’t look like you need the extra McRib.” Carla was obviously displeased with this response, exclaiming “McScuse me?” and knocking “her *ss down.”

An Indianapolis grandmother fought off an armed attacker with a pair of staple guns. The badass granny had just parked in her garage when she says a robber ambushed her and demanded her purse. The man pushed her up against a toolbox, and she grabbed whatever she could find to fight back, which turned out to be some staple guns. She actually hit him with them, rather than stapling him.

Two hecklers tried to perform an exorcism of Ted Cruz at one of his campaign events in New Hampshire. Cruz laughed it off, saying they were clearly Bernie Sanders supporters.

A spokesperson for Donald Trump says that he “single-handedly brought back freedom of speech.” She says that when Trump does things like dropping the “P-word” to describe one of his opponents, he’s just speaking his mind, unlike other candidates out there.

Ben Carson says he would be open to being the Vice Presidential nominee on a Donald Trump ticket. He says he wouldn’t count out being the number two on anyone’s ticket, but there would have to be “major philosophical alignment” and promises of “doing something substantial.”

The first case of the Zika virus has been reported in Indiana. The person with the virus is “a non-pregnant resident” who recently traveled to Haiti.

A state rep from downstate in Illinois wants to make it illegal to post video of fights online. She said she was disturbed by videos that have popped up online lately that show people whipping their phones out to record the fight instead of trying to stop it.

Free ziplining and hot chocolate will be offered for three days only in Millennium Park starting Saturday. It’s part of a campaign from the tourism bureau in Kissimmee, apparently ziplinging in the cold will make you want to book the next flight for Florida. I see this ending well.

The last domino has fallen in Target’s efforts to scrub the world of traditional gender stereotypes. Now they are introducing new children’s bedding and bedroom supplies that ditch gender conventions. Now, instead of pink ponies for girls and sports-themed stuff for boys, they’ll be selling more generic stuff like astronauts, trees and bicycles.